25 November 2013

SBMA cancels Christmas party; funds to go to typhoon victims instead

The Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority (SBMA) has cancelled this year the traditional Christmas party for employees in sympathy with victims of Typhoon Yolanda in Eastern Visayas.

SBMA Chairman Roberto Garcia made this announcement on Friday following the decision of the SBMA board of directors to cancel the scheduled party for the agency this year.

“It was a unanimous decision on the part of the board,” Garcia said. “We also ratified a resolution donating the amount intended for the Christmas party to the typhoon victims.”

“This is just a small contribution, we know, but we hope that this would somehow make some difference in the life of our kababayans who have suffered a lot,” Garcia added.

The re-channeling of the SBMA Christmas party budget to the Yolanda relief drive was the latest in the humanitarian response here for typhoon victims, as the SBMA rallied the Subic Freeport community last week following the devastation in the Visayas.

Garcia said that employees of the SBMA and locator-companies in this free port have been collecting donations and sending them to concerned agencies to help in the government’s relief efforts.

Garcia launched the relief drive here during the Monday flag-raising ceremony following the weekend disaster.

According to the SBMA Public Relations Department, which is coordinating the collection of donations here, the SBMA has already sent via LBC cartons of assorted food items, water and clothing weighing more than 2,000 kilos. The items were donated by individual SBMA employees, and various Freeport companies and organizations.

The SBMA Tourism Department, on the other hand, reported that it has already received more than P220,000 in cash and bags of in-kind donations from various locators and investors.

Early this week, Hanjin Heavy Industries Corporation (HHIC)-Philippines, the Korean shipbuilder based in this free port, said it has delivered P4-million worth of rice to the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) in Pasay City.

Meanwhile, Theodore Huang, chairman of the Subic Bay Development and Management Corp., donated P4.5 million, while Moon Kang, another investor here, gave P200,000 worth of rice.

Garcia said that more donations from Subic Freeport workers and companies are forthcoming. (RAV/MPD-SBMA)